Brace of Bamboo Fly Rods for Sale: Nils Patraw, Maker: Rocket Scientist, IBM, DARPA

Up for sale are two hand-crafted bamboo fly rods from Nils Patraw, Rocket Scientist.  These are well-made split bamboo fly rods built by a retired rocket scientist, with several patents to his name.  As you can see from the images, both rods have mortised butt sections.  It appears that the  ferrules are CSE and the reel seats are Bellinger.  One spacer is a nice Redwood burl, and the other looks to be Amboyna burl.  Both seats are uplock, threaded barrel.  Ferrules and guides are bright nickel silver, as well as the reel seat furniture.


Both are two piece, two tipped rods.  Wraps are Java Beige, with translucent finish.  The longer rod is a matte finish, and the shorter rod is finished high gloss.


The longer rod is 7’9″ for a 4/5 weight line.


The 7 footer is for a 2 weight.


To this day, Mr. Patraw’s whereabouts remain somewhat of a mystery, however, in his own words,

Rumors of my demise are greatly exaggerated! During the 80’s as a Member of the Technical Staff of HUGHES Space and Strategic Engineering Division I wrote a research paper (white paper) on subjects of Space-borne Supercomputing. I had been attempting to solve some of the technology bottlenecks that limited speed-power/propagation delay, data throughput and power consumption problems of then current supercomputing “state of he art”. My research became funded by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) and folded into the Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI). Most people would remember this as “Star Wars”. My patents that are generally listed are just some of those commercially applicable. As you may guess, most of it is classified. More interesting, I think, few people know that I had a one – on- one discussion (1994) with President (“just call me Bill, Nils”) Clinton just off the tarmac at Moffet Field not far from Air Force One. I was involved with guidance electronics R&D for the THAAD Interceptor Missile at Lockheed Missile Systems, Sunnyvale, California. The Democrats wanted to cut the R&D funding of this missile because of of all the criticism of earlier programs like Patriot Missile. I remember terms like Billion- Dollar-Boondoggles, etc. The President asked me: “Nils, will these missiles ever work?” I reassured President Clinton: “With the Nations continued support, rest assured Bill, THAAD Systems will become…….”. 

So long for now folks, Please do something for your country! 

Sincerely, Nils E. Patraw January 30, 2011.

Nils Patraw Bamboo Fly Rod

Nils Patraw Bamboo Fly Rod










The asking price for each rod is $995.00

Posted by on March 5th, 2015

Comments are closed.